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Good heart . . . Stef Backhouse holds cards that will be used to spread Christmas joy. PHOTO: TYSON YOUNG

Stef Backhouse is making sure nobody is forgotten this Christmas.

She is on a mission to spread Christmas joy by getting people in the community to write “lovely” messages in cards for those who would usually miss out during the festive holiday.

The idea came from Auckland woman Hannah Rodgers and is part of the Sending Love project.

Mrs Backhouse said she was so inspired by the initiative that she decided to become an Oamaru distributor for the project.

“Nobody needs to be forgotten at Christmas,” she said.

She has set up Christmas card drop-off boxes across North Otago at places such as Weston Four Square, New World Northside and Presence on Harbour.

“Hopefully, people will do cards and then I will collect and distribute them all,” she said.

After getting the cards, she plans to deliver them to places such as rest-homes and Women’s Refuge.

It was hoped that hundreds of Christmas cards would be made for the cause.

Mrs Backhouse believed more people, young and old, were suffering from loneliness in the community.

“I think loneliness has grown over the years, even from when I was a child,” she said.

“People are far too much into social media instead of meeting face to face.

“I think that’s where loneliness grows, especially in young people – not only the old.”

Several teachers in schools across North Otago have told Mrs Backhouse they will get their pupils to make cards for the cause.

If this year’s operation was a success, there was no reason why it couldn’t be done next year, she said.